Author: Tricia Lott Williford

How to Share Authority in Blended Parenting

Blended Parenting is about Shared Authority. It’s the balance of saying, “I know she was in charge, but now he is too.” It’s the careful dance of listening and learning, of stepping boldly around and sometimes into the landmines of parenting.  It is the difference between Power and Authority: Power is taken, Authority is given. Our counselor coached us through the process with this step by step model: First, identify the rules.  “In our family, we don’t leave our trash for someone else to clean up.” Identify the consequences.  “People who leave their trash for someone else to clean...

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Let Every Heart Prepare Him Room

Choosing Joy at Christmas Christmas can feel complicated. We can feel lots of emotions at once: harried with many things to do, spread thin inside a calendar filled with parties and people you may or may not actually want to see, longing for—or freedom from—Christmases past, with a ribbon of delight and a sprinkling of awe over any magic that’s left for you. There can be so many emotions, so many expectations, and so little margin to breathe. For me, Christmas is compounded with sadness, remembering, and recurring anxiety. It was six years ago, two days before Christmas, that...

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How to Teach Kids the Art of Writing Thank You Notes

We are in that sweet spot between Thanksgiving and Christmas, where it seems that everything around us takes a soft curve—or a sharp right turn—from a spirit of gratitude to over-consumption. I don’t know about your family, but at my house, there are only a few hours between being thankful for what we have on Thursday and shopping the best deals on Friday. It’s hard to know how to navigate these waters, but the best way to claim the joy of the entire season is to keep the giving of thanks alive. During this season especially, your kids will...

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Facing the Monster Called Fear

Let me tell you a little secret my son, Tyler, and I have together to help him battle fear. We started writing Tyler’s Brave Book. He has a notebook in his room where we record brave things Tyler does. When he went to sleep with just one nightlight on, we wrote it down. When he went downstairs to the dark kitchen to fill up his water bottle before bedtime without an adult, we wrote it down.

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How To Avoid Raising Entitled Children

Last week, we celebrated my son’s 11th birthday.When my children were toddlers and preschoolers, I discovered the very real truth that it’s easier to celebrate one child’s birthday when all the children have something to do. And that was the catalyst for the Birthday Brother Tradition, whereupon the one with the unbirthday gets to open a present. (Or four.)
As my younger son opened a gift from my mom, he tore away the paper at the corner of the package to reveal a Lego project. And to my great horror, he said, “Yes! That’s what I was expecting!” Expecting? Hold up, cowboy. We’ve got some training to do.

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